French Ambassador to Israel Reportedly in Affair With Daughter of PLO Terrorist
Patrick Maisonnave, the French ambassador to Israel, is reportedly in a relationship with the daughter of a high-level PLO terrorist, Issam Sartawi, who was later assassinated, the French-language JSS News reported Monday.
Maisonnave, according to the report, is close to Nadia Sartawi, the former director of International Relations and Protocol of the Palestinian Legislative Council (the Palestinian Assembly), and who was also in charge of economic negotiations for the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Sartawi currently works for the ministry.
Her father, Issam, was the right hand man in Europe for Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat, and played an important role in the attack against Israeli Jews at Munich Airport in 1970, according to Israel’s Ma’ariv newspaper.
On February 10, 1970, three terrorists attacked El Al passengers in a bus at the Munich Airport with guns and grenades, killing one passenger and wounding 11 others, according to the US State Department. The Action Organization for the Liberation of Palestine and the Popular Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine claimed responsibility for the attack.
Sartawi, however, reportedly also held dovish political views, and was in favor of a Palestinian state in Jordan – which Arafat rejected. In 1983, invited by the International Socialist Congress in Albufeira (Portugal), Sartawi was murdered by a group linked to Abu Nidal, another Palestinian terrorist group.
Contacted by Ma’ariv in late October, Maisonnave refused to answer any questions:
Reporter: Hello Ambassador Maisonnave…
Maisonnave: Hello, I’m driving and will not talk about my private life.
R: Do you know the story of her father?
Maisonnave: I’m sorry, I do not know you and I will not talk about my private life.
R: I just wanted to tell you…
Maisonnave: Where did you get my number?
R: You are an ambassador and I am a journalist … You are an important figure in Israel!
Maisonnave: Thanks, but I’m not talking about my private life…
French-Israeli artist and activist Ron Agam told The Algemeiner that he sees the relationship as inappropriate and said it could undermine the envoy’s diplomatic credibility.
“I just don’t see how this ambassador can stay in Israel and keep his credibility clean,” Agam said. “He is now emotionally attached to the Palestinian cause and cannot have an unbiased attitude towards Israel.”
Agam added, “There are many serious and thorny issues between Israel and France, and to have an ambassador that sleeps with the enemy is not exactly something Israelis would appreciate.”